General Steps for Illness Prevention
If you have a betta die – scald the old bowl
Many fungal and bacterial growths, as well as parasites, can live in adverse conditions. When your betta passes on, it is possible the reason he/she died is still present in the tank or bowl. By cleaning the bowl thoroughly you can kill whatever lurks and prevent passing it on to a new betta.
Sick tanks are a must
If you have your betta in a tank with other fish or simply a tank where you don’t want plants or decorations to be harmed/stained from medications, be sure you have another tank on hand for a sick tank. By isolating the sick fish you can save a lot of headache and money by keeping the problem from spreading to the other fish – betta included.
Change the water regularly
This is a must! For uncycled fish tanks, a 100% water change should be given at least weekly for 1-gallon tanks, every 2 weeks for 2 gallons (with possible partial changes in-between), and so forth. Watch your ammonia level – you want to change your water frequently enough that you never get an ammonia reading in your tank. In addition to this, never subject your betta to fast, unplanned water changes. Try to keep the temperature and the pH of the new water the same as what was previously in the tank.
Wash your hands and any items you use in multiple tanks
Of course, ideally, you should only have net per tank and one this per tank and one that per tank – but it can get very expensive. If you wash things, including your hands, before each tank use or directly after, this will prevent the spreading of infections and diseases between fish. By washing your hands you also avoid getting lotion or grime from hands into fish tanks that could cause possible illness. Remember to rinse, rinse and rinse some more, as soap should never come in contact with your fish tank.
Do not overfeed your betta
By feeding your betta the way he should be fed, you can prevent problems like Constipation. A full-grown betta’s stomach is approximately the size of his eyeball. Please keep in mind this is a general estimate as different bettas may require different amounts of food based on their age, size, etc.
Always remove uneaten food
Yes, if he doesn’t eat it, take it out! The food decomposes just as anything else and can pollute the water, raising toxic ammonia levels. A turkey baster is a useful tool to have on hand – a simple suction can remove the tiniest of particles from the water. Remember to clean it with scalding hot water between uses and never use it in multiple tanks at one time. You can pass an infection from one tank to the other.
Watch your bettas
When you feed your betta – watch. When your betta rests – watch. You will notice normal patterns of behavior which will make illnesses much easier to identify. If you don’t feel good you don’t do everything you normally would – neither will your betta.
Remove any dead fish or snails
Do not let ‘nature take its course’ and allow other tank mates to eat it. It is not best! The decomposing body in the tank will pollute the water and promote bacterial and fungal growth. This can easily cause illness in your tank.
Keep bettas warm enough
A happy and healthy betta needs to be kept between 76-82 degrees F. Temperature should be stable and not vary more than 2 degrees between night and day. A thermometer is a must to monitor the temperature of your betta.
Research before treating for illness
In the event that illness does strike, keep in mind that adding medications to an aquarium is stressful on the fish. Always make sure you have identified the possible illness and correct actions to treat it.